A Conflict of Visions

From Academic Kids

A Conflict of Visions is a book by Thomas Sowell. Sowell's opening chapter tries to answer the question of why the same people tend to be political adversaries in issue after issue, when the issues vary enormously in subject matter, and sometimes hardly seem connected to one another at all. The root of this, he says, are the "visions", or the intuitive feelings, that people have about human nature; different visions imply radically different consequences for how they think about everything from war to justice.

The rest of the book describes two basic visions, the "constrained" and "unconstrained" visions, which are thought to capture opposite ends of a continuum of political thought on which one can place many contemporary Westerners, in addition to their intellectual ancestors of the past few centuries.

The book should be compared with George Lakoff's Moral Politics, which aims to answer a very similar question.

The book has been published both with and without the subtitle "Ideological Origins of Political Struggles".

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